- At a glance
- Locality & Walks
- Accommodation & Meals
- Travel options
Your Holiday at a Glance
|Independent Walking Holiday||
|Dates for 2013||
|Accommodation and Meals||
|What's not included||
Cote d'Azur Walk
On the French Cote d'Azur, the mountains of the Alps plunge directly into the Mediterranean Sea. Your independent walking holiday starts with three days walking in the rugged foothills of the Alps through wild wooded valleys, scented with herbs such as thyme and lavender and visiting picturesque and historic perched villages including Castellar, Saint Agnes and Gorbio. The wild mountain scenery is covered in pines olive trees, and orange and citrus groves with panoramic views plunging towards the sea.
On the last two days of your self-guided walking holiday you'll get closer to the Mediterranean and discover the wild headlands and secluded bays cut off from development by huge pines. Take a dip in the sea or eat your packed lunch under a warm sun on a deserted secluded bay, out of season. This stretch of coast also has its historic gems such as the perched village of La Turbie and the old town of Nice. You'll also experience the opulence and splendour of Monaco and Monte Carlo.
A self guided walking holiday in France moving between guest houses at the upper end of the moderate grade. The days average 5 hours walking (not including lunch) with between 300m and 900m of altitude gain. Average for the week is 500m of ascent per day. You should be reasonably fit and happy walking on paths in hilly areas and have a good head for heights.
Day 1: Arrival
Welcome in your hotel in Menton at the end of the afternoon. This seaside resort is nestled at the foot of some imposing cliffs and mountains, decorated with perched villages.
Day 2: Castellar – Monti – Sainte Agnès
Castellar is the first of the perched villages that you'll get to explore. Here olive trees are replced by citrus fruits and orange groves with the slopes inbetween grazed by sheep with calming views of the Mediterranean. In the afternoon, a wild valley leads you to the historic village of Saint Agnes (classed as one of the prettiest villages in France, only revealing itself at the last moment. Meal and night at hotel in Saint Agnes, the highest coastal village in Europe at almost 800m. +540m to +900 m / - 200 m, 1hr45 to 5hr depending on options chosen
Day 3: La cime de Baudon
Sainte Agnes, an lovely example of a perched village, has a number of fortifications on the cliffs that form the backdrop to this historic settlement. Your walk leads to the Cime de Baudon (1266 m) offering superb panoramic views to the south with the bay of Menton and the green Cap Martin. To the east you can see the highest summit in the Mercantour Alps and to the west the Esterel hills and the bay of Saint Tropez. Meal and night in hotel at Sainte Agnès.
Day 4: Sainte Agnès – Gorbio – Roquebrune village – Cap-Martin
Today your walking trail passes from one medieval village perched on the mountainside to another, as you progress along the mountain slopes, with glorious views of the Mediterranean stretching out before you. These villages, gaurding entry by the sea are crammed with natural and architectural treasures. You'll first pass through Gorbio, followed by the Roquebrune with its chateau and thousand year old olive tree. The end of the day finishes by the sea, the pine trees acting as a natural parasol. Meal and night at hotel in Menton.
Day 5: Monte Carlo – La Turbie – Monaco
Transfer by train to Monte Carlo. Your walking trail climbs in a wonderful setting to reach the beautiful historic village of La Turbie which is topped by the Trophée d’Auguste, a 1st century Roman monument. The trail continues along a balcony walk before returning by the hill known as Tete de Chien and the headland Cap d'Ail. Visit of Monte Carlo. Transfer by train and meal and night at hotel in Beaulieu sur Mer.
Day 6: Beaulieu sur Mer – Villefranche-sur-Mer – Le vieux Nice
Amazing and magnificent day following the French Cote d'Azur to reach the port of Nice and the Bay of Angels. The small colourful ports have replace the hill top villages. Your walking trail passes through small colourful seaside ports,around the headland of Cap Ferrat with its turquoise waters and the charming alleyways of Villefranche sur Mer. In addition, the fortifications of Mont Boron and the coastal path in the cliffs of the Cap de Nice, make this a marvellous walking day. Night in hotel at Nice.
Day 7: Departure
Departure after breakfast. We recommend a look around the old town of Nice with its flower market and a walk to the chateau on the hill for exceptional views.
See other independent walking holidays on the mediterranean coast: Pyrenees Coastal Trail
Return to full list of self-guided walking holidays in France and UK
Accommodation & Meals
6 nights in hotel on a half board basis. 4 **hotel and 2 hotels non-classified chosen for their warm welcome and location. Mix of different syle hotels. Below are a couple of examples used on the walking holiday.
|Hotel Marcellin||Hotel||Family run **hotel in Beaulieu sur Mer, close to the sea with a cosy feel and intimate decor||2 star|
|Saint Yves, St Agnes||Hotel||Located in the village of Sainte-Agnès, 800m above sea level. Great views from the hotel and terrace over the Mediterranean.|
Eurostar, TGV and TER trains allow access to Menton in southern France.
From the UK, changes between the Eurostar and TGV are at Lille or Paris. TGV's run from Paris to Nice direct or via Lyon or Toulon. Change at Nice to take the line Nice/Vintimille and descend at Menton. Please use Rail Europe's train finder in our travel store to organise your TGV tickets.
Please contact us before booking to check for practical times.
There are flights from French and UK airports to Nice Cote d'Azur airport. Operators from UK airports include Flybe, Easyjet and British Airways. Aéroport International Nice-Côte d'Azur is located 7km from the city centre. A taxi service runs from the aiport to the city centre and takes approximately 20 minutes. Alternatively you can take a 10-15 minute bus journey from the airport to the town centre which runs every 30 minutes. The SNCF station is close to the town centre. The main car hire firms are present at Nice Airport.
Please visit our travel shop for links to useful sites for reserving airport parking or booking train tickets
Note: Please check concerning the availability of a holiday before booking any flights. If you need further information or would like to discuss any aspect of your travel arrangements, please contact us, we’re here to help you.
Self Drive from UK
Channel ferry crossings from Dover are provided by a number of operators including P&O Ferries & DFDS seaways. Crossings are also provided by train with Eurotunnel.
Once in France, the journey from Calais to Menton takes about 11-12 hours (excluding long breaks). From Nice take the motorway A8 towards Italie and leave at the exit Menton. Train back from Nice to Menton using the line line Nice/Vintimille.
Secure Parking : Saint-Roch (04 92 10 96 77) et Lorédan Larchey (04 92 10 23 25). Allow about 60 € for 7 days (tariff 2010).
Free Parking : There are a number of places in the car park on the Vallée du Careï (large avenue which descends from the motorway to the bus station.)